After going through two grueling (but fun) move-ins in the last two years, I am slowly starting to pack again to make sure that moving in (with 400 other people at the same time) will be a relatively painless process with less trip ups that will require me to go in and out of campus to buy things I had previously neglected to buy.
There are definite dorm room essentials: bedding (sheets, comforter/duvet cover and pillows), dishes, cups/mugs, cutlery, towels and shower caddies. That, along with your clothing are the essentials – do not forget them!
However, you will find that there are things that you will forget you need when moving in. Here is my personal list of the unforgettable:
A box of tissues & wet wipes: Moving in gets dusty and you might want to give the room a good clean and disinfecting before putting assembling everything and putting your room together.
A mirror (both standing on floor and a smaller makeup-mirror): a lot of rooms do not include a mirror both floor length or on a table which is crucial for me – I need to know how I look before I go out.
Beside lamp & other lighting: Often there is only one master switch on the opposite side of the room, which makes navigating to the bed really difficult when you want to get to bed with the lights off. The lighting also brightens up the room, which makes it a more welcoming studying/ entertainment space.
Stick on wall hooks: to organize jewelry or have more hanging space for frames or coats
Shoe rack: the number one most forgotten thing to buy by my fellow dorm-mates. It really helps you keep things organized, you can see all your shoes (instead of just throwing them all in a box) and it wastes less space than if you just place all of them on the ground.
Before my first year in uni, I remember my dad giving me a great tip when it came to packing, put one day aside and list down everything you use and need – and go from there!